Excerpt from Spiritual Enlightenment

The trick of desire is that there is always more to be had. Once one happiness fades away the mind will cling to the next. Notice this the next time you find the fulfillment of a desire. Be honest with the emotions in yourself. Do you truly feel joyful? And if so, for how long does this joy last? How long until there arises a new desire?

Do you now see the futility in this cycle of desire that makes up all of our lives? A void is followed by the excitement of desire. This is followed by frustration when the desire is not fulfilled. At best there is a brief glimmer of satisfaction once the desire is fulfilled, that swiftly gives way to the void within. Thus begins the cycle again.

If the lesson cannot be learned by your own self, then let it be learned by others. Listen to those who have what you desire. There is no lasting joy for them in their attainment. For many there is misery. More misery even than there is for you. Because once you have attained all that you ever wanted, and there still is no bliss, there is hopelessness. The real danger in desire is in its attainment. When you feel that there is now no other hope for the happiness that you are in need of. This is why many of those who seem to have it all have turned to substances. Why many of them have taken their own lives. You will come to find that the end of desire is not bliss, but misery.

To abolish desire, however, is not the answer. To renounce what you desire is not the answer. The answer is in the awareness of desire. In the awareness of how desire has not brought you lasting bliss, and in the realization that it never will. It is in the awareness of how in fact it brings you misery.

There are some desires of the mind that are prominent. They are large, at the forefront, easy to see. The desire for beauty, for instance, is a desire that can be seen in daily life. It’s a desire at the tip of your tongue when you ask yourself what it is you want. For many of us, it is expressed in many daily routines. However left without awareness, beauty is a dangerous desire. It is dangerous because it has no end. It is dangerous because it will inevitably fade with time. A mind that desires beauty for satisfaction has leaped into an endless pit of comparison, jealousy, and self-deprecation. Many have even died being sliced into in order to change their shape to become more beautiful. There is no ending point to beauty because it is merely subjective.

The desire for success is as dangerous as an addiction. The desire to become something. It is a desire that’s been planted in each of us since our earliest years. The world and those who raised us are expecting success. With good intentions of course. Those who planted this seed have also had this seed planted in them. They believe that success will lead to happiness, even though they are not happy themselves.

How could the desire to succeed create misery? The desire to become clouds the mind of the pleasure of being. We are the only species that tries to become. That is so driven by ego that we will sacrifice our sleep, our freedom, and our happiness for a greater social standing. The constant desire for success is rooted in the deep notion that you are not good enough. You, as you are, are not enough. You must do better. And, why? So that you might be happy. So that at the end of this long road of suffering you might feel satisfied with your achievements.

However, this is the trick. There is no end to the amount of money one can make. There is no end to the amount of success that can be had. You will eternally be frozen in the notion that you are not enough. The life of a person can be consumed by the need to attain success. And like beauty, there is no end. Success is subjective. The subjectivity lies in the dissatisfaction of the mind. And the mind will always be dissatisfied until it solves the problem of the endless void of bliss that you feel within. You will still be void of bliss and the mind, in its naive wisdom will say, you must not yet be enough.

Once you have identified these larger desires you will come to see how they create misery. You will notice that all of your frustrations are stemming from these desires. Self-doubt and frustration stem only from the impediment of your desire becoming fulfilled. This is simple to see for your larger desires. A business dealing does not go as planned and you become miserable. This is obvious. However, you will need to become aware of the more subtle. How subtle desires are causing you misery.

You will come to find that behind every frustration there is desire. Let us say that you are having an argument with a lover. This is common. Why are you angry in your fight? Because you want to be right. You want the other to act a certain way. You want a perfect relationship with your lover. What if the desire wasn’t there? If you felt that it is the way that it is. Where is the anger? Without anger would the relationship not flourish? Would your communication not heighten?

This is the other way in which desire causes misery. Frustration clouds the mind. It creates strife where there could be clarity. The mind in stress is not a mind that can create a solution. Science has proven that a mind under stress has a far inferior ability to solve problems than a relaxed mind.

When you notice frustration, let it alert you of a desire. At times the desire is in the form of intention. You intend to leave the house but you can’t find the keys. Immediately you become exasperated. However the location of the keys is not creating frustration. The frustration is stemming from your intention to leave the house.

The moment you notice the frustration, find the desire. Find the intention. Suddenly, the moment you identify the intention, you bring logic into your frustration. It brings in understanding. Suddenly, the frustration has vanished. Now all there is left is a simple task of finding the keys.

This works for intentions large and small. No matter the size, recognizing the root of frustration will create a clear path to move forward. Frustration will have no place once you have identified the reason for it. It will serve no purpose. In fact the Latin root of the word comes from frustra meaning “in vain”.

Now it is to be understood that there can be preference. There can be success. There can be beauty. However not a means for happiness. Once you become aware of your desires and how they are leading to misery, they begin to fall away. Then you will begin to feel more weightless. In this weightless and more blissful state, there may be preference, however, it will not affect your bliss. You will know that it is not where bliss comes from. You will be happy either way.

You can prefer to have a blossoming relationship with the lover however in becoming aware of the desire you can see clearly. You can manifest this preference with ease, as the frustration will not cloud your ability to act wisely. To act in a way that will result in what you would have preferred.

It will be hard for you to let go of desire because you feel that without it you will never reach. However, you now do not know what it is you could truly prefer. At the time now, you are simply filled with the poor solutions of a naive mind. A mind that is grasping at straws and pulling you in many directions in order to feel bliss. Don’t cling to your desire out of the fear that it will create indifference. That it will create laziness. The energy that had previously been consumed by frustration will now flow into creation.

However, in order to free yourself of this cycle of desire and frustration, you must recognize that all desire is the desire for bliss. Recognize that bliss is to be found only when you are satisfied here, within this moment. Happy and peaceful in the nature of existence, satisfied and pleased with the beauty of your aliveness. Because when the day comes that your life is no longer, you will realize that just to be is a gift that you have never opened.

Once you realize this very deeply, then desire will fall away from you. Only awareness is needed. Only readiness to see. Then, it becomes a very simple task. Why continue to desire more and more when you cannot even enjoy what is in front of you now? This is true renunciation. Not when you force yourself away from your desires, but when desire falls away from you. When desire falls away from you, and you feel that everything is perfect in its current existence, this is the beginning of bliss.

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